31 Years Ago: BATHORY release Blood Fire Death

Daily Noise -

31 Years Ago: BATHORY release Blood Fire Death

"Blood Fire Death" was a complicated album as we were doing it almost for a year, back and forth. We had plans to do a concept album and were really into this Viking thing. Swords, muscles and Conan. We started to write songs for an album called "Blood On Ice", which was recorded but never released. When we recorded "Blood Fire Death" we recorded 25 tracks but we understood that this would be too expensive and the kids could not afford it. So anyway you look at it, it was too expensive in the long run so instead of a doulbe LP it became a normal LP, and we called it "Blood Fire Death" instead. Blood Fire Death symbolised the music we were making at that time. We were really into arranging the music. It was maybe a bit to boring for the average Speed Metal fan so we lost them as we gained new ones. Therefore we have almost sold the same amount of LP's all the time.

Quorthon / Bathory interview, Slayer #10, 1994

BATHORY released Blood Fire Death on this day in 1988. The fourth album, BFD was recorded that February at Heavenshore Studio.

...on equipment hailing from the late 60s, early 70s and using a 14-track demo-style mixing table of home made-fashion (in reality 12-tracks due to the fact the table itself didn't have any effects of its own - hence two tracks were used for echoes etc. mind you, sometimes tracks on that old made tape-machine we used just wouldn't work from one day to another). This private demo-studio was seldom, if ever, used for anything serious other than BATHORY and occasionally up until '87 (but all the time after that) it was actually working as a garage (which in fact is just what it was to begin with) and not only used car parts be stored there, but the damn place would function as a repair shop in between the recording of Blood Fire Death and Hammerheart (and as such all the time when the latter was recorded)...

Blood on Ice sleeve notes

...we laid down tracks for 2 albums, because we wanted to do a double album. We recorded 25 tracks and picked out the best ones we wanted to put on the record. We have progressed our sound since "The Sign Of The Black Mark" - and came up with a better sound as well. The album was recorded in a small studio with hardly no gear at all, and then we took the master tape into a studio with computers and all kinds of shit and mixed it and it turned out really well. I did have some problems with my voice but apart from that it went extremely well.

Morbid Vol 3 No 2, 1988

We knew when we recorded 'Blood Fire Death' that it would be the last LP with a major Speed contribution. 90 per cent of the fans wanted us to go a lot heavier and slower.

Kerrang!, 1990

So around UNDER THE SIGN OF THE BLACK MARK and BLOOD FIRE DEATH, it truly felt like a waste of time and effort to write about that religious crap. When we picked the Nordic theme up, we weren't Satanists going soft, a Black Metal act that sold out, or a evil band that lost its' ideals. We were just moving on. The Nordic theme wasn't any more true or closer to heart than the dark and evil themes. Using the Nordic theme was as much painting with words as the Satanic theme. But as much as I thought Christianity seemed absurd on a whole, it would have been absurd not to bring other topics into BATHORY once the dark and evil theme had been exploited fully.

Bathory History, Bathory.nu

When I grew up there were two comic magazines one read every week. One being a horror type of mag called Chock (in the same vein as say, Tales from the Crypt). The other one was Savage Sword of Conan or Conan the Barbarian. Having grown up reading Chock, I was already nourished with a great well of inspiration when stuff for the first triple set of albums were written (no serious reading of the so-called black bible here, oh no... not even the blue, yellow or even the pink one either, mind you). Now the world of swords and swelling muscles of Conan worked pretty well as an inspiration source when I was writing what was to be the material that ended up on Blood Fire Death...
I was also a long time fan of the life and works of Richard Wagner, addicted to his operas and aware of what he read when finding inspiration for them, I turned to the same books and legends.

Blood on Ice sleeve notes
The Savage Sword of Conan #57 cover

...all metals at heart, get a copy of our new LP "Blood Fire Death" ("Hammerheart might be out by the time this zine is released, in that case, get a copy of "Hammerheart") and listen carefully, send me a letter of what you think, what you would want us to do in the future, what you would not want to see us do in the future and what you think is best with our albums. Remember, it is you the fans out there on whom we depend on. We would be nobody's if it wasn't you the fans. We love you, all we do is for you. When you are no more, we are dead. Stay united and may the northstar shine on you all, keep metal at heart!!

Quorthon / Bathory interview, Evoker, 1989